Portland Timbers forward Danny Mwanga scored a brace and forward Chris Wondolowski came off of the bench to score two for the San Jose Earthquakes as the two sides played to a spirited 2-2 draw at Buck Shaw Stadium on Wednesday night.
The Timbers, playing their second match in five days, jumped out to a 2-0 lead on the MLS-leading Earthquakes behind Mwanga's goals on either side of halftime. San Jose put Portland under heavy pressure throughout the second half and was able to pull one back in the 73rd minute on Wondolowki's 20th goal of the season. Trailing by a goal two minutes into the second-half stoppage time, Wondolowski then headed in the equalizer, extending the Earthquakes' unbeaten run at home to 13 matches with a 2-2 draw.
The Timbers' defense, featuring goalkeeper Joe Bendik in his first MLS start, faced 23 shots by the Earthquakes, with 14 of those coming in the second half. Portland recorded a season-high seven saves, including five from Bendik and a first-half, goal-line stop by defender David Horst, to help pick up a point on the road.
Mwanga recorded the second two-goal performance of his career, midfielder Rodney Wallace logged his first assist of the season and midfielder Franck Songo'o was credited with his fourth assist for the Timbers (7-14-8, 29pts). Portland has earned points in six of its last eight games.
Wondolowski notched his fifth multiple-goal game of the season to extend his MLS-best goals total to 21 on the season. Forwards Alan Gordon and Steven Lenhart each earned assists, while forward Simon Dawkins and midfielder Ramiro Corrales shared the team-lead with four shots each for San Jose (17-6-6, 57pts).
With the draw, the Earthquakes, unbeaten in their last four games, extend their lead on the Supporters' Shield race to three points.
The Timbers struck for the opening goal in the final minute of the first half. On a counter attack, Mwanga and Wallace played a one-two, and Wallace sent a leading ball for Mwanga into the box. Mwanga held off his defender and worked around charging San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch before slotting a shot into the back of an open net.
Taking advantage of another counter attack, the Timbers doubled their lead 2-0 in the 62nd minute on Mwanga's second goal of the night. Songo'o had a hard-fought run up the middle of the park, avoiding multiple tackles, before finding Mwanga open on the left side. Mwanga set himself up for a shot from distance and drilled the ball into the top right corner of the goal; it was his third goal of the season against San Jose.
Wondolowski came on as a second-half sub in the 58th minute and helped San Jose climb out of the two-goal deficit. In the 73rd minute, a ball played over the top was continued on by Gordon and Lenhart before finding the feet of Wondolowski inside the box. Wondolowski finished inside the left post, beating the diving effort by Bendik.
The match intensified over the final 20 minutes, with San Jose's unbeaten run at home on the line. The Earthquakes played a ball in to the box from the left side and Timbers defender Hanyer Mosquera used his head to knock it off course. But the ball fell to Wondolowski on the back post, and the league's leading goal scorer headed home the late equalizer to level the score at 2-2.
Wondolowski's second goal of the night marked the Earthquakes' MLS-record eighth goal this season scored in second-half stoppage time.
Portland had a chance to steal all three points in the closing moments of the match, when Songo'o carried the ball almost the full length of the field on a counter attack and passed the ball off to Dike at the top of the box. Dike's shot from 15 yards missed just wide of the right post as the Earthquakes defense chased him down from behind.
The Timbers continue their two-match road trip Saturday when they visit Real Salt Lake for the second time this season at Rio Tinto Stadium at 5 p.m. (Pacific) on NBC Sports Network. Saturday's match will also feature live radio broadcasts on 101.1 FM KXL in Spanish on La Pantera 940 AM.
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